Motorcycle weekend

Labor Day weekend is the traditional end-of-summer celebration that signals the start of the school year and the approaching cooler days. For Southwest Colorado, the tradition includes an influx of two-wheeled visitors who gather to celebrate all things motorcycle. This year, in keeping with tradition, motorcyclists and motorcycle enthusiasts will have a full menu of activities to choose from across the region.

The weekend’s keystone event is the Four Corners Motorcycle Rally, anchored at the Sky Ute Fairgrounds in Ignacio. There, rally-goers can enjoy music acts, entertainment, feats of derring-do, brawn and bawdiness alike throughout the weekend. Today will feature a performance by Wild Country at 1 p.m., a 2 p.m. horseshoe tournament, mechanical bull-riding from 3 to 5 p.m. – a warm-up for live bull-riding Saturday – and arm-wrestling contest preliminaries at 4 p.m. Rockslide will perform at the Sky Ute Casino from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Saturday will feature more music – Rockslide, High Rollers, Diamondback, Psychedelic Mojo and Electric Edric, to name a few – and more entertainment, including field and bike games at 1 p.m. and a homemade bikini contest at 7:30 p.m. On Sunday, beach volleyball will begin at 9 a.m., with music and games throughout the day, including a wet T-shirt contest at 3 p.m. and the arm wrestling and tattoo contest finals beginning simultaneously at 5:15 p.m.

A parallel event, the Sugar Pine Ranch Rally in Mancos, has its own full lineup, including music with The Texas Flood today at 5 p.m., a Rally at the Valley Inn Nursing Home complete with rides for residents from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, as well as an aerial bike show and the Reverend Catfish Band at 1 p.m., and a performance by Gods of Thunder at 9 p.m.

Though not an official rally headquarters, Durango will offer its share of events, including this evening’s El Rancho Street Party from 5-9 p.m. at 10th Street and Main Avenue, where the Kirk James Blues Band will play and attendees can meet the Hardly Angels. On Saturday, the party will move to the Elks Club on Second Avenue and Ninth Street, with live music from the Jelly Bellys from 5 to 9 p.m. Durango’s main motorcycle weekend event, though, is Sunday morning’s bike and classic-car parade, which will travel through downtown Durango beginning at 11:20 a.m. after the car show from 8 to 11 a.m. in the First National Bank parking lot. The parade will surely be a noisy event, with an opportunity to see some of the finest in motorcycle and automotive design and creativity.

We welcome the motorcyclists as they rumble into town for the annual Labor Day festivities, dotted across the beautiful southwest corner of Colorado.

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